Thursday, 17 April 2014

A Chat About Summoned by Rainy Kaye

Today the blog is playing host to author Rainy Kaye as she stops by on her blog tour for her new book, Summoned. There's have a sneak peek at the book, plus a little insight into how it's opening sentence came about. Oh, and there's a contest too, at the bottom of the post. Enjoy!



Here's a few words from the author on her book, and a short excerpt:


Why I Love the First Line in Summoned


“I dislike having to murder someone.”

Through revisions and edits, this first line has remained untouched. I wanted something that conveyed Dimitri's take on his entire world: his detached disdain for being made to do horrible things. It's too easy to fall into the trap of making characters accepting of committing crimes a normal person wouldn't even consider, so it was important to me to that Dimitri wasn't apathetic even if resigned.

Of course, an opening line should do more than introduce the character; it should lead into the scene too. And there is one thing he hates worse than killing. . .

“I dislike having to murder someone. Kidnapping is worse. At least when I setup a kill, I know what's coming. No connections, no honesty, no surprises. Everything I say and do are just steps to luring in my victim. Once the victim falls right into the trap, the next move is swift: crushed windpipe, fatal concussion, or a good ol' fashioned headshot.
Kidnapping, on the other hand, is a little trickier. First, the victim has an opportunity to respond. I don't like this. Sometimes they cry. Sometimes they manage to alert the authorities. And sometimes they escape, usually by inflicting bodily harm on me.
Dead people don't retaliate. Kidnapped ones, well, they're a little more . . . lively.
The second major difference between killing and kidnapping is my conscience. I get in and out with a kill. We have no chance to bond.
Abductees require a little more one-on-one. As much as I try to keep the switch turned off, I can't help but listen to their pleas and demands. And I usually realize I'm a jerk.
That's exactly where I find myself one late afternoon in June. I prefer doing this at night, but moreover, I would prefer not doing this at all.
Instead, I have a belligerent nine year old girl sitting in the passenger seat of my Honda Accord, shackles on her wrists and ankles and a small stuffed bunny on her lap. She's eyeing me in a way that makes me self-conscious. Like I'm the bad guy.
Probably because I am the bad guy.”


Summoned by Rainy Kaye

Twenty-three year old Dimitri has to do what he is told—literally. Controlled by a paranormal bond, he is forced to use his wits to fulfill unlimited deadly wishes made by multimillionaire Karl Walker.

Dimitri has no idea how his family line became trapped in the genie bond. He just knows resisting has never ended well. When he meets Syd—assertive, sexy, intelligent Syd—he becomes determined to make her his own. Except Karl has ensured Dimitri can't tell anyone about the bond, and Syd isn't the type to tolerate secrets.

Then Karl starts sending him away on back-to-back wishes. Unable to balance love and lies, Dimitri sets out to uncover Karl's ultimate plan and put it to an end. But doing so forces him to confront the one wish he never saw coming—the wish that will destroy him.



Author Bio

Rainy Kaye is an aspiring overlord. In the mean time, she blogs at RainyoftheDark.com and writes paranormal novels from her lair somewhere in Phoenix, Arizona. When not plotting world domination, she enjoys getting lost around the globe, studying music so she can sing along with symphonic metal bands, and becoming distracted by Twitter (@rainyofthedark). She is represented by Rossano Trentin of TZLA.

Her Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/rainyofthedark




And here's the Rafflecopter contest for Summoned:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, 14 April 2014

The Writing Process: A Blog Hop


The Writing Process Blog Hop


An author friend of mine, Sarah Butland, tagged me for this blog hop, and sent me some fascinating questions to answer. So, this time I'm the one in the spotlight. 

Here's our mini interview, I hope you enjoy:

Sarah: 
Is there a contest that you entered or won which changed your life forever?

Me: 
I can’t say there was, I’m afraid; I've never had much luck with contests. Although there was an elementary school competition where my haiku got selected for a publication. I remember being quite proud of that, and it gave my mother bragging rights for a bit.

Sarah: 
How much of your day is spent writing new and/or marketing old.

Me:
I think that depends on the day. I do try to achieve a balance between the two, but sometimes I get caught up in one or the other. I get on a writing roll, and the time ticks by and the next thing I know those marketing tweets or that blog post will have to wait. Or promos and events push back the writing. And then some days I’m just a buzz with multi-tasking: writing, marketing, whatever. It does help to schedule some marketing in advance though, like blog posts and tweets.

Sarah: 
What's the best story you've ever read and how did its marketing catch your attention?

Me: 
The best story I ever read was published way, way back before I even dreamed of marketing, namely All Summer in a Day by Ray Bradbury. As a child, I found it I the back of a magazine I bought through the Scholastic program at school. That story was the catalyst that started my lifelong love of short fiction.
More recently though, I discovered the brilliant book series, On Dark Shores by J.A. Clement, and I found her marketing strategy caught my attention. She hearkened back to the olden days of serial novels by publishing a sequence of ongoing novellas, each one being a part of the whole story, and continuing the chapters from the previous book.  I’m not certain any author could have pulled it off, but her writing is so exceptional, she has her readers well hooked.


My latest book



And now here’s a bit about the two authors that I've tagged for the hop. I hope you’ll check out their blogs; it will be worth the time:

Steve Vernon
Steve Vernon lives and works in Nova Scotia Canada, and is the author of such books as Haunted Harbours: Ghost Stories From Old Nova Scotia, The Lunenburg Werewolf And Other Stories of the Supernatural, Maritime Monsters, Sinking Deeper, Sudden Death Overtime, and Tatterdemon.
He’s traveled right across Canada and has worked as a factory hand, house painter, field worker, tree planter, roustabout, woodworker, artist's model, fiddlehead picker, blueberry raker, woodchopper, warehouse strawboss, snow shoveller, garden digger, environmental criminal and anything else that paid a buck. He’s married with children and has a cat named Kismet.



Axel Howerton
Axel Howerton is an award-winning poet and the author of the quirky neo-noir pulp detective novel Hot Sinatra, the mini-anthology Living Dead at Zigfreidt & Roy, and a bevy of short stories and hidden gems. Axel is a former editor for Dark Moon Digest and, as the long-time Senior Editor of Eye Crave DVD/Eye Crave Network, he was one of the champions of the burgeoning b-movie scene of the early-mid 200′s and one of Canada’s webtertainment pioneers.
Axel is also the co-creator and organizer of the annual Coffin Hop online author extravaganza, and the owner-operator of Coffin Hop Press. His fiction has recently appeared in Big Pulp, Fires on the Plain, Steampunk Originals Vol. 1, the Big Lebowski companion piece Lebowski 101, the LGBQT anthology Clones, Fairies and Monsters in the Closet, A Career Guide To Your Job In Hell and the best-selling holiday anthology Let It Snow: Season’s Readings For A Super-Cool Yule.
He is a member of the Crime Writers of Canada and lives in the wilds of Western Canada with his two brilliant young sons and a wife who is way out of his league.



Friday, 4 April 2014

Book Spotlight: Viking Myths: Stories of the Norse Gods and Goddesses

Today I'm spotlighting a book full of the legends of Norse myth and gods (some of my favourite things):


Viking Myths: Stories of the Norse Gods and Goddesses by Thor Ewing

From its first beginnings in a world of primordial ice floes, the story of the Viking gods is one of continual struggle against etins and monsters, but it is a tale of humour and triumph as well as of grit and tragedy. The Norse myths are justly famous for a host of vivid characters including the wise and enigmatic Odin, the bluff strongman Thor, and the incorrigible trickster Loki. In the first major retelling for a generation, storyteller and historian Thor Ewing rediscovers the brisk vitality with which these ancient myths were told in the earliest sources. With 45 stunning b&w illustrations inspired by Viking art.



You can find this book on Amazon UK:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Viking-Myths-Stories-Norse-Goddesses/dp/1910075000/

And Amazon.com: http://www.amazon.com/Viking-Myths-Stories-Norse-Goddesses/dp/1910075000/


Author Bio:

Thor Ewing was born in Putney in 1967. He studied Medieval Literature at Durham University before becoming a contributor to a number of academic publications covering Viking and Nordic culture and pre-Christian religion. Ewing is also the author of a number of other books, including The Wisdom of the Celts (Edda, 2004), Viking Clothing (The History Press, 2006) and Gods and Worshippers in the Viking and Germanic world (The History Press, 2008). Ewing now lives with his wife and children in Bucknell, Herefordshire.


Find out more about the author and his books at his website: http://thorewing.net/



Friday, 28 March 2014

Out of Your Comfort Zone: A Guest Post by Sarah Butland

Talented author, Sarah Butland stops by today, to chat about her recent award-winning short story, and challenging yourself as a writer...

Out of Your Comfort Zone


We all have comfort zones and are simply ok in them but if you want to succeed it's important to get out of them once in a while.

Inspirational speaker and best-selling author Jack Canfield has a simple exercise to teach this. When you put your hands together, intertwining your fingers, you automatically put them the way you're most comfortable, if you purposely put them the other way it feels weird.

Challenge Accepted

I experienced this in a huge way when I was encouraged to submit to a children's category of a local writing contest. Without much time left before deadline and an infant at home, I thought it was an impossible task but decided to just go for it.

Inspired by a message from an amazing author and motivator, it just seemed like the best opportunity for me to see what I could do. Still remembering sitting in the kitchen while my son crawled on the floor at my feet (he was well cared for and learning to entertain himself) I brought up my laptop and wrote.

The maximum word count was 10000 words and I zoned out and wrote close to 4000, exhausting what I could do in that moment of inspiration.

And then I read it...

The situation itself was out of my comfort zone and I succeeded in writing something so unusual for what I would usually that I was shocked. A little nervous because of it being just half the maximum word count I decided to submit it with determination and as an experiment.

The experiment paid off and I won the contest and the interest in many of my writing idols as well as many more in the age group it was targeted to. The only problem – the readers wanted more and I had no idea where to take the story.

Take your challenge

Read a different genre, write about a troubling topic or go for a hike when you feel you're out of shape. Challenges don't have to be feared, they need to be embraced so you can add excitement to your life and change the outcome of your life.

And then come back and tell us all about it.

Thanks for reading,

Sarah Butland

PS: This fantasy story can be downloaded for free today for your Kindle at: http://bookShow.me/B00J5NTC5W



Blood Day : the Short Story

Writers Federation of New Brunswick award winning short story for the children/ young adult category, Blood Day was created out of a looming deadline, a bit of encouragement and dedication to writing a story.

I've always been told we all bleed red, take breaths, and die if poisoned so I often wondered why I wasn't dead yet.
In this glimpse of the life of someone who just isn't what the books say she should be, we try to understand what it means to be human, a person and fit in with the expectations that surround us.

Blood Day contains more science fiction than is to be expected from Sarah Butland, the mystery of a world we don't know is strong enough to make this a brilliant read.

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